China has re-established a strict closure near Beijing, which affects around 400,000 people, after a small increase in cases.
The restrictions have come into effect in Anxin country in Hebei province, near the capital.
After the pandemic in China emerged late last year, the country has brought new infections to a consistently low level.
To avoid a second wave, even small waves are taken very seriously by the country’s health authorities.
What’s going on in Hebei?
Authorities announced Sunday that Anxin would be “completely closed and controlled.”
Only essential workers can leave their homes, while a household member can leave once a day to buy their needs.
No non-resident resident may enter buildings, communities or villages. Authorities have warned that anyone who violates the rules will be punished by the police.
Anxin is about 150 km (90 miles) south of Beijing. Chinese media say there have been 18 cases in the county since the recent surge in Beijing began two weeks ago.
The area is not as densely populated as China‘s large urban centers, and local health experts said they were optimistic that the spread could be halted.
What is the situation in Beijing?
China’s recent figures remain the envy of most other countries affected by the virus. However, a recent surge in Beijing makes authorities fear a possible second wave.
In the past 24 hours, Beijing reported 14 new cases of the virus, bringing the total from a mid-June outbreak in a food market to 311.
While this is a small number compared to the thousands of daily cases in the United States or South America, China reacted quickly to contain any spread.
Several neighborhoods in Beijing were subjected to restrictions, travel was limited, and a massive wave of new tests began.
Before the recent rebound, the Chinese capital had gone 57 days without a locally transmitted case.
How does the rest of China deal with the virus?
Overall, China has successfully “flattened the curve” in recent months.
After passing 80,000 confirmed cases in early March, he has only added around 4,700 since then.
Since mid-June, new infections have been mainly confined to Beijing, with some spreading to neighboring Hebei.
The rest of China has only seen a small trickle of single-digit infections, most of which were imported cases, meaning travelers returning from abroad.